Ford F150 Lightning: Part II

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My first test-drive of the F150 Lightning was deliberately cautious – because running “low” in an electric vehicle is not the same as running low – on gas. The latter can be found easily, almost anywhere. Even if you actually run out, there is almost always a gas station within walking distance. And you can walk back with a jug of gas.

This you cannot do with electricity.

If the EV you are driving runs out, you will be stuck. Even if there is a plug not too far away, it is doubtful you (or they) have a cord that can reach that far. So, you have to be careful about running low – and be mindful of where (and how) you can “fill up.”

For that reason, I decided to do a shorter-than-usual trip, especially in view of the fact that the truck only had 180 miles of indicated range remaining. So, about 50 miles round-trip. This used up 61 miles of the indicated remaining range.

Actually, it may not have used up quite that much.

One of the things I noticed – before I left, as I was reading manuals in the driveway – was the indicated range went down by a mile or two as I was sitting there. This indicates the draw on the battery of electrically powered accessories, such as the truck’s audio system and all the gauges/LCD screens.

Also, possibly, the heating/cooling system for the battery.

One of the other things not conveyed to potential EV buyers is that many EVs have a heating/cooling system for the battery, which is necessary to keep it operating optimally. This consumes battery power. Maybe not a lot. Maybe more than you’d expect – if it’s very cold (or hot) outside. But the point is there’s no free lunch when it comes to powering anything. And it appears that just sitting consumes a little power – even when it’s not too warm or too cold out, as was the case here yesterday.

The temps were in the low 60s – unseasonably warm for December in SW Virginia. I am hoping to find out what effect seasonably cold temperatures might have on the Lightning, even just sitting still.

Now, you can avoid this trickle-loss by keeping the EV plugged in. This, however, could be difficult for people who do not have a garage with a plug – or a cord that can reach far enough from wherever they have to park outside and wherever the closest plug happens to be.

Anyhow, I got back home with 120 miles of indicated range remaining – after having driven 50 actual miles. So, about 10 miles less range than indicated at the start of my trip. That’s a significant difference – one that, if typical, would raise Hell if we were dealing with non-electric cars and advertised miles-per-gallon. In fact, Hyundai got in a lot of trouble for – according to the lawsuit – advertising higher-miles-per-gallon than its cars actually delivered in real world driving.

The difference between indicated and actual range is even more of an issue with electric cars (and trucks) because of the recharging issue. If you “run low” sooner than you thought you would – because you thought you had more range left than it turned out you actually did have left – you might not make it to the plug, either at home or “fast” – and then you will be stuck.

There may also be a battery health issue here as well in that it is generally true that completely discharging a battery is hard on a battery. We know it is hard on batteries to “fast” charge them, too.

See the owner’s manual about that.

When I got home, I decide to try plugging the Lightning in to standard 120V household AC to see how much range accrued overnight via this method, as many people do not have any other method at home, to recharge an EV. This morning, I found none had. Some issue with the charger mechanism, perhaps. I’m not sure. I don’t want to blame the truck – or the power cord/charger mechanism that comes with it.

But I now have 119 miles of indicated range left.

My plan for today is to drive the truck to the gym and then to where I think there is a commercial “fast” charging station available, just down the road. If there isn’t, I will have to cross my fingers and attempt to make it back home – and up the mountain, that being Bent Mountain and an elevation gain of about 2,000 feet over the course of about three miles of twists and turns.

When I get home, I will see how much range remains – and report that in my next . . . report. I will also try plugging the truck into a 240V AC outlet and see whether that makes it any happier. . . .

Part III is here.

. . .

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  1. Its interesting how even at 60f, its loosing charge sitting there !!

    Imagine them selling a normal car with a fuel tank which leaks petrol constantly!! Doubt many will accept it. And imagine the regulators and the “government” being all over the company with fines and penalties. In this case however crickets !!

  2. Managing batteries is far more effort than managing gasoline. Even with ethanol in it.

    Remember to charge them, check on them when they are charging else they might not actually be charging. Plan your usage around slow charging to get maximum life out of the batteries. Don’t leave batteries connected to the device when not in use or they will drain to where they won’t work any more. And so on and so on.

    • Hi Brent,

      It’s astounding, isn’t it? All of these liabilities. All of these additional hassles… and people cheer it! Whatever happened to expecting things to become better? Cheaper? More practical? Less costly?

  3. I would be very disappointed if I plugged in my car only to find out I didn’t have enough range to get to work the next day.

    What if you had a relative that was in trouble or needed assistance? Sorry, my car doesn’t have charge, you’ll have to walk home from school today.

  4. Mercedes EV vs VW diesel fuel economy

    A Tesla owner shared on Twitter the Supercharging rates from the Los Angeles area and indicated that they roughly doubled in the past years. To be sure, the $0.58 per kWh rate is for the peak hours from 11 am to 9 pm, with half that outside this interval.
    In Europe it is $0.72 per kwh…coming here soon…lol

    Twitter users across the U.S. have indicated similar rates, with averages of $0.40 becoming the norm

    Mercedes EV with a 90 kwh battery:

    In ideal conditions a mercerdes EV used 49.6 kwh per 100 miles = 1.42 gallons of gas at the wall plug = reality 5.7 gallons of fuel burnt at the power plant to make the electricity = 17.5 mpg…so range = about 200 miles, but you can only use 60% of battery capacity so range = 120 miles

    but…….. under ideal conditions …..but at top speed ……a mercedes EV used 90 kwh of electricity in 100 miles which = 3 gallons of gas at the wall plug….back at the power station reality = 12 gallons burnt = 8.3 mpg…….so range = about 100 miles, but you can only use 60% of battery capacity so range = 60 miles

    Under other not ideal conditions the EV efficiency drops a lot, might use twice as much energy to go 100 miles. Using the electric heater, heated seats, AC, stereo, and the rear defroster and wipers, or towing something in an EV reduces range too.

    In very cold conditions the battery range can drop 50%. so same result… 90 kwh of electricity used in 100 miles which = 3 gallons of gas at the wall plug….back at the power station reality = 12 gallons burnt = 8.3 mpg……so range = about 100 miles, but you can only use 60% of battery capacity so range = 60 miles

    but what if you go top speed, flat out in very cold weather what would it be?….lol….what if you are towing something?….lol

    travelling 100 miles in a diesel getting 73.5 mpg U.S = 1.36 gallons for 100 miles, no need to waste all that fuel.

    diesel fuel cost per 100 miles = 1.36 gallons @ $4.00 per gallon = $5.44
    mercedes EV fuel cost per 100 miles = 49.4 kwh @ $0.40 = $19.40

    EV fuel savings…hahaha

    There is an additional cost for the EV owner: the tesla $22,000 battery is used up, worn out in 100,000 miles. this works out to $22.00 per 100 miles it is costing you for the battery.

    mercedes EV fuel cost per 100 miles = 49.4 kwh @ $0.40 = $19.40…plus $22.00 for the battery use = $41.40….lol
    the diesel owner paid $5.44 to go 100 miles….lol

    EV’s are very expensive to own.

    Thermal efficiency of power plants using coal, petroleum, natural gas or nuclear fuel and converting it to electricity are around 33% efficiency, natural gas is around 40%. Then there is average 6% loss in transmission, then there is a 5% loss in the charger, another 5% loss in the inverter, the electric motor is 90% efficient so another 10% loss before turning the electricity into mechanical power at the wheels.

    33% – 6% – 5% – 5% – 10% = 25% efficiency for EV’s.
    (under not ideal conditions it might be 12% efficient).

    An Ev is 25% efficient in turning original source of energy, petroleum in this example into mechanical energy to push the car down the road.

    On a race track driven at ten tenths a tesla used 80 miles range in 8 miles, a 90% drop in range, not 50% driven fast EV’s get very bad fuel economy…….

    burning 5.7 gallons of fuel to go 100 miles is cleaner, safer, less wasteful then burning 1.36 gallons of fuel?

    Why are they pushing EV’s? They use twice the fuel so pollute twice as much…

    They advertise EV’s getting 102 mpg….they should be sued, it is impossible using the technology they use, it is another huge lie….
    (because they quote mpg at the wall plug, before the wall plug fairies and unicorns make the electricity….lol)

    The switch to EV’s has nothing to do with fuel economy or less pollution it is all about control and limiting/stopping mobility.

  5. Fuel economy of the Ford F150 EV truck….

    EPA estimate of 51 kWh/100 miles = 1.96 kwh per mile which equates to 16 mpg…in ideal conditions….
    if it is very cold outside this drops 50% = 8 mpg….

    when towing 6000 lb range dropped to 85 miles about a 75% drop = 4 mpg

    How about a gasoline-powered equivalent? Though they don’t really compare in power or price, Ford does sell a Platinum F-150 SuperCrew with a 5.0-liter V8 under the hood. The gas-powered Platinum (which can also run on e85) starts at an MSRP of about $63K, so about two-thirds the cost of its fully electric counterpart.

    Its 5.0-liter V8 engine produces a decent 400 horsepower but offers little more than half the torque of the Lightning at 410 lb-ft.

    The good news is that the V8 isn’t picky about its octane, so regular fuel is fine, and this F-150 is estimated to get 20 mpg in combined driving………hot or cold you still get 20 mpg

    when towing 7000 lb range the F150 5.0-liter V8 engine truck got 9.8 mpg ……with 26 gallon tank = 254 mile range….

    cost per 100 miles

    F150 EV 51 kwh x $0.40 at fast charger = $20.40……. plus battery cost $22.00 = $42.40 total
    the $22,000 battery lasts 100,000 miles (if you don’t use fast chargers) this equates to $0.22 per mile x 100 miles = $22.00

    • cost per 100 miles

      F150 EV 51 kwh x $0.40 at fast charger = $20.40……. plus battery cost $22.00 = $42.40 total
      the $22,000 battery lasts 100,000 miles (if you don’t use fast chargers) this equates to $0.22 per mile x 100 miles = $22.00

      F150 ice 5 gallons X $3.33 = $16.65

      • pay $42.40 to go 100 miles in an F150 EV or pay $16.65 in an F150 gas ice truck….plus the F150 Ev costs far more, has no range and takes hours to refuel/recharge, weighs more so eats tires….and the lithium fire bomb batteries are very dangerous….don’t charge it inside your garage….lol

  6. All that figuring and planning sounds like too much BS and any sane minded person would avoid EV’s. Personal transportation should be worry and stress free and convenient. BTW, speaking of sane people and EV’s, I seen a stereotypical lefty and a Tesla at the local diner today. His “appliance” had two stickers on the back passenger windows. One side had “Page county votes democrat” and other side had “Eat your peas and take your fax”. The driver looked about 70+, Woodstock type with a ponytail on an otherwise balding head. I guess the only things missing were a Che Guevara t-shirt, peace sign and a hammer & sickle!

  7. Average EV range

    What test drivers are actually getting driving in the real world driving EV’s is they are getting 2.4 miles of range for every kwh…that equates to 20 mpg….lol
    In big heavy EV’s like trucks, it is a lot worse, less then 2.4 miles of range for every kwh…

    ATTENTION: What test drivers got in the Hummer EV:
    they are getting 1.23 miles of range for every kwh or using 80.69 kwh to go 100 miles.

    For a 90 kwh battery the range is 2.4 miles x 90 kwh = 216 miles, but you can only use 60% of that range so the real range is 129 miles in ideal conditions, 30 mph, flat road, no wind, 70 degrees out, no accessories on, AC, etc…
    Lots of these batteries are far less then 90 kwh so their range will be far worse. If it is 45 kwh battery divide these numbers by two.

    In not ideal conditions, like when it is very cold out, the range drops 50% so the range is 65 miles now. 65 mile range forget about buying an EV….lol
    When it is very hot out it effects the battery range also, these batteries are very fragile and finicky, they only function properly when it is warm out only, ice cars run all the time, no problem.

    At -7°C, when the climate control system was used to warm the vehicle’s cabin, EV range dropped an average of 41 percent (with an efficiency drop averaging 39 percent) compared to the earlier 24°C baseline. At 35°C, use of the climate control to cool the cabin saw an average 17 percent decrease in range (with an 18 percent decrease in efficiency).

    AT WOT…wide open throttle the range drops 90%, on a race track a tesla at WOT used 80 miles range in 8 miles….lol…..if you tow something, the same problem.

    EV pushers always quote fast charger charging times, this is deception, fast chargers can’t be used without ruining the battery, so that means no long trips, the EV can only be used close to home, it is pretty useless..

    NOTE: If you use fast chargers a lot it will ruin the battery in your EV, it will lose 50% of it’s range, if you don’t use fast chargers it takes forever to recharge, forget about installing a fast charger in your house, the grid can’t handle it and they cost $90,000 installed per car, lots of people have multiple cars. So you are stuck with slow 9 hour charge times.

    ATTENTION: The faster the charging, the hotter the battery gets! Battery makers often advise a cool down period before it is used again! Nobody is doing this….

    Failure to do that overheats the battery, makes it extremely inefficient and shortens its life by up to 50%. NOTE: These are facts that producers of electric cars will not tell you!

    ATTENTION: Do not buy a used EV nobody uses a cool down period, they use fast chargers so the battery is ruined.

    The scrap yards will be over flowing with these EV’s with dead batteries, which cost more to replace then the car is worth, these are dangerous lithium fire bomb batteries which can’t be/aren’t being recycled, the biggest ecological catastrophe in history, millions of lithium fire bomb batteries leaking and ready to explode in a fire ball….lol…note there is a $4500 recycling fee. About 5% are recycled now….they say…lol

    Telling you how quickly their car can charge, sells cars……….telling you how fast you could ruin your battery is not sales talk!
    Telling you 0 to 60 times sells cars, telling you after you did that a couple of times, there is only 50 miles range left, it killed ther battery, is not sales talk…

    Car salesmen always had a bad name, EV pushers are far worse liars….lol

    The best battery charging rate is slowly by night while you sleep!…note…if everybody does this it overloads the grid, so you can’t charge, this will make over night peak use time, so electricity rates could go up 300% to 1000%, for that time, which has already happened in some countries. Now the electricity cost is far higher then buying gas for an ice car…lol

    NOTE: you can only use 60% of the battery capacity…… between 30% and 90%. using the battery below 30% you can damage the battery, charging above 90% can damage the battery and cause a fire. So you can only use 60% of the range advertised…..

    Fast charging?…start a fire….lol
    Extreme fast chargers, for example,can push battery pack temperatures to 270ºC…514ºF after just a few minutes of charging. Charging times are so long they are putting in extreme fast chargers that ruin the battery and could start a fire, but nobody bothered telling you….lol……
    these EV’s are so bad they are trying all sorts of dangerous crap to make them work.

    After 100,000 miles the battery needs to be replaced (one owner only got 70,000 miles, maybe they used fast chargers which ruin the battery), for $22,000 to $30,000…lol

    another risk……80% of important EV batteries and parts come from china, in a war, no parts or battery supply….. your EV is a brick….lol…getting closer

    80% of EV batteries are made in china in factories powered by burning coal……lol

  8. You just spent two articles talking about batteries, charging and range.
    That tell us a lot.
    In the good old days I imagine the primary subjects would be ride, handling, acceleration, braking, payload / towing capability, seat comfort, clarity of gauges and controls, price and reliability.
    Not a thought about batteries, charging and range.

    The starting prices for the 2023 F-150 Lightning will now range from about $52,000 to $97,000. Prices exclude options, taxes and shipping and delivery costs.

    The Inflation Reduction Act which was signed in August of 2022 stipulates that the final assembly of the vehicle must take place in North America to be eligible for tax credits in 2023. There are additional requirements as to where the raw material for the batteries are sourced and where they’re assembled. So will Ford meet this last requirement? It’s unknown.

    As of now, the three lower trim levels of the 2022 Ford Lightning are still eligible for a federal tax credit but the three higher ones are not. For a truck to be eligible for the credit, the price has to be below $80,000. The Lightning’s three highest ones (which are the extended range versions) are above this threshold.

  9. Dont worry about discharging the batteries too much, they are software limited to prevent that. If you run out it will just stop.

    During a recent hurricane Tesla sent out a fix to allow Tesla drivers to access some of that reserve for the emergency evacuation.

    Of course if you just let it sit for long enough they will really die with damage or destruction of the battery pack.

    Lithium ion batteries are exotic, temperamental, and dangerous. A desparate attempt to get more energy density to make smart phones, laptops, and electric cars more practical.

  10. Hi Eric, Ford also advertises that after you drive this beast to the job site you can run all your power tools off it all day, and then drive home. You probably can’t simulate that but would love to know how many miles that takes off the range….hope the job site isn’t very far 😆

  11. Those estimates remind me of the vaccum “economy” gauge on my high school friend’s ’74 Monte Carlo. Push the throttle, watch the needle jump over to red. Let off and it popped back to green. Great fun for a 17 year old sense of humor.

    You do make an interesting observation. The vehicle is always “on” and discharging. The difference between shutting off your phone’s screen instead of powering it down completely. If you leave the thing out in the driveway it will constantly draw current just sitting there. Eventually, maybe quickly, the battery pack will be depleted and you’ll need to charge. Basically for doing nothing but taking up space in the driveway. Does that get calculated into the estimated MPGe? Will you get a warning on the app telling you that you pissed away a charge (hopefully on a house charger and not on “retail” fast charger rates) keeping the batteries warm? People might say the same thing about modern gasoline, but fuel stablizer is cheap and gas will last months, even untreated.

  12. Ford may have deliberately given you the truck this week knowing that the temperatures would most likely not hit extremes of hot or cold.

    How long ago did you receive the “heads up” about receiving the vehicle for testing?

  13. It might come as a shock to Ford, but people who work trucks have other things to think about besides how much battery their truck has left, how they are going to charge it, and how long it will take. Much less the time and money it will cost to tow it to a charging place, fast or slow. I’m all for new ideas, my own and those of others, and trying them out. When they fail, I abandon them. EVs have failed. By design.

    • I’ve said it before, but I believe the 1500 EV pickup truck hopefully will wake up a lot of people about how silly all this eV stuff is. Of course you’ll get the people who will lie to themselves after just dropping 50K+ on a vehicle, but there will be a lot of average joe’s with a boat or rv, that think they are cool and find out quickly that they are not.

      Had a good friend who was days away from buying a tesla, and he got the wrath from my brothers and I. At the end of the major weekend long debate, we said “just by it Bob, and let us know how it goes”. But we knew he is a very practical guy……… A week later ‘I bought another Grand cherokee’.

  14. The range anxiety and mental gymnastics regarding charging, range, and possible death via vehicular immolation are all designed to keep your mind off the future that the NWO has already planned for all of us…

    A military boot, stamping on a human face…forever…

    Plan accordingly!!!

    • Microwave your lunch in your EV when it is charging?….lol

      Sit in your EV when charging and get microwaved and if you are unlucky the lithium fire bomb battery will catch fire and incinerate you….

      Health damage from EMF radiation from EV’s

      Since Tesla is an electric car with a large battery and an electric motor, it emits high amounts of EMF radiation. The latest models emit high levels of electromagnetic radiation.

      Dangers of EMF Radiation from Tesla Cars and Other Electric Cars
      According to a study by Scripps Clinic Research Foundation, high levels of EMF from EVs make the drivers drowsy and sleepy while driving. Based on the study, drivers who are exposed to high levels of EMF while driving are likely to sleep 52 minutes faster than those exposed to low levels of EMF. Is this why there are so many tesla, EV, crashes?

      In addition, exposure to radiation while driving can result in headaches, neck stiffness, and dry eyes or blurred vision. Long-term exposure to these sources of EMF radiation may have long-term health complications.EMF Radiation from Electric Cars
      blurred vision… this causing crashes?

      According to Dr. Joel Moskowitz at the University of California Berkeley, hybrid cars and other electric cars have increased levels of ELF that cause cancer, increase the level of oxidative stress that leads to DNA fragmentation, cause cell damage, fertility issues, drowsiness, etc.

      So drive an EV and get…..damaged DNA , cell damage, get sterilized, get drowsiness and crash….lol

      Electric cars, including the Tesla EV do emit a dangerous amount of EMF ……….Electric cars do emit more radiation compared to standard fossil fuel vehicles.

      If you sit in your EV when connected to the super charger/ high speed charger you get microwaved, stay away from the car when it is charging.

      Stay out of the car….lol……….this will be interesting in the middle of the night, in a dark parking lot, when it is snowing and freezing out….lol….these Ev`s are a safety hazard in many ways…

      Avoid Sitting in the Car While Charging the Battery
      When supercharging the battery, a high amount of EMF is emitted, therefore, do not stay inside the car.

      Charging the car creates substantial amounts of dirty electricity (DE). When you charge your car in the garage, you are putting extremely high levels of DE onto the wires of your entire home. turn your house into a microwave oven….lol

      To supply electricity for EV`s the electrical grid has to be expanded by 500%, so the EMF radiation from the transmission, distribution lines will increase 500%, destroying people`s health.

      This is especially problematic as most people charge the car overnight when the occupants are sleeping – the time of day when we want our EMF exposure to be as low as possible.

      they went on and on for 2 1/2 years about a mild flu, relabeled as a dangerous bat germ, but haven’t said a word about this health issue, that is actually real and 100 x worse then a mild flu.

  15. Sounds like lots of mental mileage calculations paired up with a fun house range gauge. Better guess right. Who could live like that? Especially when you’ve known not living like that.

    • Funk Doctor Spidock,
      That’s a lot to ask of a generation that can’t do simple math in their head at all. That can only make change with the guidance of their register or other calculator. My grandkids are often astonished with the math I can do in my head. And I’m a 68 year old drinker with a 45 year old head injury that compromised some of that ability.


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